As long as She’s by My Side….

Photo Courtesy: blogs.walkerart.org (Aparna Ramaswamy of Ragamala Dance. Art and photo: Ed Bock)

This heart-warming video reminded me of an incident that happened when I was in class 12. For our school annual day programme, I was selected for a Bharatanatyam dance event. I was one among the ten girls who got the most-desired opportunity to participate in the dance event. The practice sessions went fine. And we all were getting ready for the D day. The other nine girls in our dance team were Bharatanataym dancers, most of who have learnt the art for a quite a few years then. I was the odd-man-out. But all through the practice sessions, I didn’t quite feel that though. There was wonderful team spirit and encouragement from all of them and our coach.

However, on the day before the event, it struck hard on me that I didn’t have the accessories required for the dance. The others obviously had them. I had only a few hours left to get the ornaments ready for the dance as the dance was scheduled as the first event on the next day. My coach didn’t expect this from me for some reason and demanded I either get them tomorrow morning else they will have to find another dancer at the last minute to replace me. That sounded ridiculous after all the hard work I’ve put in.

I walked back home, confused and disappointed. I was not only just disappointed but also furious against those people who could only think of replacing my performance for the matter of accessories. I decided that it was not worth to be a part of it. Yes, I wanted to quit.

(When I thought about this a few years later, I realized that partly I was suffering from a complex. As a matter of fact, I was coping up with the pace and art of skilled dancers. Though it wasn’t apparent, I had felt down all along that I wouldn’t be able to perform up to their standards. So when my coach became upset at the last moment, I assumed she was regretting for having selected me. And this complex was partly responsible for my hasty decision at that moment).

I reached home. And there she was! Ma! As always by my side to make my days brighter.

I let my anger out on her, declaring my decision to come out of the unrewarding event. After she listened to my story, she explained that the coach might not have thought about this earlier and her words would have been of a sudden shock. She tried to convince me that the coach would get alright by tomorrow and I shouldn’t give up for a silly reason. I was in no mood to accept the fact that I was asked to be replaced by another dancer and went to bed early.

However, ma had searched for a shop that rented out dance accessories and bought them hurriedly before the shops would close for the day. I was surprised to check out the beautiful ornaments the next morning though I was still adamant not to participate in the event. After several advices and requests from Ma, I finally got convinced to go to school to meet my coach. I still wasn’t willing to dance though.

I couldn’t meet my coach at the school in the morning. She was busy with the event arrangement. I was called for the final rehearsal. I didn’t want to go but my co-dancers forced me to the rehearsal hall. Before we could begin, all of us shared the accessories we had got for the dance. Surprisingly, everyone else eyed on mine, saying it is by far the most glowing of all. All of a sudden, I felt lifted my some magnetic force. After the darkness I’ve been into the whole of yesterday, I finally felt excited about the final stage performance. The rehearsal went well. At the end of it, my coach spoke to me that she had watched us practice and that my moves stood apart from the rest of us. She felt bad about her sudden rage yesterday and admired what Ma had borrowed from the shop last evening.

We were positioned on the stage and the curtain opened. My eyes caught Ma in no time. How grateful a moment it was! I know I can never fall short of courage as long as she’s by my side!

This post is written for Indi Happy Hours sponsored by HDFC Life.

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